LADWP: cheaper to fight than fix

After a billion dollars and eleven years, the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power is suing to stop dust remediation in Owens Valley. It claims that Eastern Sierra monitors are moving goal posts for compliance, but the underlying strategy looks more like a business decision that DWP general manager recently summed up with the remark, "The legal fees pale in comparison to the cost of dust control.”

Image of the Day: Owens Valley

Hat tip to the Great Basin Water Network for forwarding this link to today’s image from NASA Earth Observatory of Owens Valley (formerly lake) in the Eastern Sierra. “The present-day Owens Lake was once part of a much larger lake and river system along the northeastern border of California and Nevada during the Pleistocene Epoch (about 3 million to 12,000 years ago),” reads the NASA caption. “Melt water from alpine glaciers in the Sierra Nevada filled the regional valleys of the Basin and Range to form glacial lakes—ancestors of the now-dry lakebeds (or playas) of Owens, Searles Lake, and China Lake. While Searles and China Lakes dried out because of regional changes to a hotter and drier climate, Owens Lake became desiccated largely due to the diversion of the Owens River in the early 20th century to serve the needs of Los Angeles, 266 kilometers (165 miles) to the south.”

Photo gallery: Los Angeles Aqueduct

Helianthus annuus, aka sunflowers, bloom by the roadside in Owens Valley. Photo: Chris Austin. Aquafornia offers a photo tour by Austin of Owens Valley and the Los Angeles Aqueduct system. To see it, click here. To read Emily Green on the smiley face of nature, click here.